THE JOURNEY OF TEAM SRI LANKA TO THE FIRST GLOBAL CHALLENGE 2017
“There are teams from nearly 160 countries this year. It’s not just about solving global problems. It’s about solving problems together with those from other cultures,” said Samantha Tenduf-La – an overseer of Team Sri Lanka describing the FIRST Global Challenge 2017. In case you’re lost, the FIRST Global Challenge is an annual international robotics challenge that aims to inspire children from all corners of the world to pursue STEM studies. Primarily aimed at high-school students, the goal of the competition is to address the 14 Grand Challenges identified by the United States of America’s National Academy of Engineering. And this year, there’s a team in Sri Lanka that’s building their own robot that will leave its mark on this global stage.
Team Sri Lanka is born
When the FIRST Global Challenge 2017 kicked off, the organizers invited schools from all across the world to apply. While Sri Lanka was a late invitee, various schools in the country were invited to apply. Ultimately, the chance to participate in the competition was given to Elizabeth Moir International School, which was the first to respond to the call for applications. And so the task of forming the team now fell upon Dilum Rathnasinghe– the ICT teacher and Shivashankaran Satchithananthan– Head of the Robotics Club. The duo went through both academic and extracurricular records of all students who were currently pursuing their A/L’s. They were looking for five talented students that were all-rounders and after two days, they had found the team.